Bill Tower’s Sebring 2019 Corvette Racing Seminar, Pt 2

In the summer of 2018 a camouflaged C8.R was seen after the IMSA race at Wisconsin’s Road America. There was some speculation that this was an indication that the C8 would be debuted soon as a 2019 model and that we would see the C8.R for the 2019 racing season.

Tantalizing indeed, but it never happened. Instead, we are seeing the allegedly aging C7.R holding 2nd place, despite IMSA’s onerous Balance of Power (BoP) restrictions. Is IMSA trying to make sure the Corvette Racing Team doesn’t win another championship? Of course, they would deny that, but it sure looks that way.

This is what Gary and Robin Pratt, and the rest of the Corvette Racing Team are up against. Let’s continue our conversation from Bill Tower’s 2019 Corvette Racing Seminar at Sebring International Raceway on Friday March 15, 2019. Read More

Bill Tower’s Sebring 2019 Corvette Racing Seminar, Pt 1

An extraordinary thing happened last year for the Corvette Racing Team. Road Atlanta was the final race of the 2018 IMSA WeatherTech Sports Car Championship season and it was a real nail-biter. Antonio Garcia is an outstanding team driver, very methodical, technical, and rarely makes mistakes. But mistakes happen. The team and spectators were shocked when Garcia’s No. 3 C7.R smacked the wall. It wasn’t a bad crash and Garcia was able to drive into the pits.

The Corvette Racing pit team is arguably the best. In five-minutes and 36-seconds the pit crew replaced the front fender, nose, and engine floor; and sent Garcia back out on the track in the hunt for another championship. When the checkered flag came down, the Corvette Racing Team won its 13th IMSA Team Championship and 12th Driver Championship in 20 years of racing! And here’s the kicker; for the 2018 racing season, the Corvette Racing Team did not come in 1st place in a single race.

How could that happen? Modern factory-backed racing is a team sport; it’s all about teamwork; as tight, efficient, and professional as any other team professional sports team. In October 2018 in the days after the Road Atlanta success, Bill Tower and I were talking about a theme for his 2019 Corvette Racing History Seminar on the Friday of the 2019 12 Hours of Sebring event. I said, “Bill, the Corvette Racing Team just won its 13 Championship in 20 years without winning a single race. Do you know anyone at Pratt & Miller that would be willing to talk about the team’s amazing 20 years of racing?” Bill responded, “Sure, I know Gary Pratt, I’ll call him to see if he’d like to be our guest.” And that’s how the event got started. But it got even better. Not only was Gary Pratt willing to be a guest speaker, Bill got Gary’s wife Robin Pratt (the Mama Bear of the team) and Ron Fellows. What’a score! Read More

Ron Fellows 2012 Tribute Z06 – Should if Be a Production Special Edition?

Now some would argue that having so many special editions Corvettes devalues each car. But I like these cars and here’s why. Why not? I believe that Chevrolet seriously missed the boat by not getting on to this nitch market decades ago. What might a limited production, 1960 John Fitch Le Mans Special be worth today? Would a ‘67 L89 427/435 Indy 500 Pace Car Roadster get your attention? Or how about a ‘71 Greenwood Sebring Special? How about a Kim Baker Corvette Challenge Street Edition, or a ‘92 Snake Skinner LT1? Getting warm yet? You could have a lot of Corvette day dreaming fun with this notion. Read More

Vette Videos – Vette Polls: C6 ZR1 Corvette vs All-Wheel-Drive Lamborghini LP670-4 SV

The other day I was sharing with you the November 2011 Road & track cover story about the 2-second club – three world-class sports cars capable of 0-to-60 in LESS than 3-seconds. Club members include the Nissan GT-R Premium, the Porsche 911 Turbo S, and the Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Super Sport. All three cars had AWD and except for the nuts-o 1,183-HP Bugatti, the other two members have LESS horsepower that the ZR1. Plus, the ZR1 weighs 225-pounds LESS than the Porsche. So, the Corvette with a 106-horsepower advantage isn’t in the club, what’s up with that? “All-wheel-drive” boys and girls. Read More

Vette Videos: Ron Fellows Flogs the C6 Grand Sport & Shows His New Driving School

Ron Fellows Day continues with two FUN videos. About the only criticism I’ve ever heard about the Grand Sport is that it doesn’t have any more grunt that the base Corvette. Fellows takes you through the basics of the Grand Sport package. The second video is a short tour of Ron’s driving school. When you buy a new ZR1, you get an E-Ticket to the Ron Fellows Performance Driving School. FUN STUFF! Stop by and abide! Read More

Corvettes Timeline Tales: Happy 52nd Birthday Ron Fellows!

Good guys shine and Ron Fellows has become one of the most popular race car drivers of our time. Ron’s a great example of starting our small – kart racing small, in fact. Kart racing lead to Formula Ford 1600 and Formula Ford 2000 cars. Ron launched his professional driving career in the 1986 Player’s GM Challenge, racing a showroom stock Camaro. Trans-Am racing followed and by ‘89 Ron was one of the most successful drivers in Trans-Am history, winning 19 of 95 starts.

When the C5-R Corvette Racing team was being assembled in ‘98, Fellows was one of “the” drivers to hire. When looking back on a successful long term career, it often appears easy, but this was far from the case. It was a long, hard battle for the Corvette Racing Team from ‘98 to the 2001 GTS Le Mans win.

Ron lives in Toranado, Canada with his wife and three children, is a passionate about hockey and the Toranado Maple Leafs and fellow Canadian, Neil Young. HAPPY 52nd BIRTHDAY, Ron! And many more! Read More